It was 78 years ago, on March 13, 1944, that my late husband, George Rodrigue, was born to Marie and George, Sr. in New Iberia, Louisiana. After more than twenty years of marriage, they had given up on having children. Yet along came George, who brought magic to their lives, and later, to my life, and perpetually, through his art and spirit, to the lives of many.
Last month I completed another tour inspired by George’s life and art, including 17 schools, 35 classes, more than 3000 students, and 3500 miles throughout north Florida and southern Alabama. I could write a novel on this one adventure, but instead share with you a few of the many video ‘shorts’ filmed with expertise and sensitivity by my current husband, Douglas Magnus. Ranging from Elementary to High School, these clips begin with George’s infectious laughter and end with the poignant message of his near-mythic life.
In honor of George’s birthday, Enjoy!
This recent Life & Legacy Tour could not have happened without my sister, Heather Parker, and my husband, Douglas Magnus. It takes a lot of creative logistics behind the scenes to schedule, advocate, and document this programming. Furthermore, these mini-exhibitions include weeks of long distance driving, numerous changes in lodging, loading and unloading of artwork, set-up, take-down, and countless other details, sometimes at multiple locations in one day. Between them, Heather and Douglas were there for every bit of it.
I also send a huge thank you to Melanie Moore and Demetrius Fuller of the Mattie Kelly Arts Foundation in the Florida Panhandle, Amy Plunkett of Baldwin County Public Schools in Alabama, and George’s and my longtime friend, Aaron Beam of Loxley and Birmingham. Thank you for your sponsorships, your hands-on, daily assistance, and most of all for taking a chance on me with your community’s children.
Next up… this April the Life & Legacy Foundation and Art Tour returns to the New Orleans area with a whole-school, week-long residency at Kenner Discovery Health Sciences Academy, complete with a ‘new’ variety of artworks by Rodrigue and others, as well as some very special guest artists.
Learn more about scheduling and supporting this unique, ‘unplugged,’ non-profit programming, inspired by George Rodrigue, and engaging students of all ages through storytelling and the arts- www.legacyarttour.org.
Hope to see you on the road.